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Faculty of Social Sciences



Writing and Citing References

Law Report Citations Referencing   Legal writing

Law report citations

  • Case law citations
    Case law citations can be a little confusing at first glance.  However they generally follow a standard format which you will soon get used to if you come across them regularly.  

Airedale NHS Trust v Bland



All ER


Names of parties


Vol no

Law reports abbreviation

Page no


  • Why provide references?
    When you complete your dissertation or paper you must cite all the sources you used, accurately and consistently.  This is one of the main ways for you to avoid being accused of plagiarism (taking or copying someone else's work and presenting it as if it were your own).  Your course handbook will explain more about plagiarism.

  • Oxford Referencing
    The standard citation style used in the School of Law is the
    Oxford Standard for Citation Of Legal Authorities (OSCOLA).  Consult the OSCOLA guide for detailed examples of citing the full range of legal references.

  • Confused?  Worried?
    The University of Cardiff's excellent Information Literacy Resource Bank is a suite of information sources providing advice on citing references . It contains videos (including a short introduction to plagiarism), interactive tutorials & quizzes, as well as an excellent Citing the Law research guide.

  • The Bluebook
    Citation methods in the United States are governed by "A Uniform System of Citation" otherwise known as the "Bluebook".   Cornell University has produced an online Introduction to Basic Legal Citation which covers elements of the Blue Book, but is more geared towards practitioners.
  • Non legal citation (Harvard Citation Style)
    Another common citation style used in the Faculty of Social Sciences is the Harvard Citation Style.  Bournemouth University have produced a comprehensive Guide to the Harvard Style.

Legal writing 



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Last updated: 20/12/10
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